It is everywhere. The wide-eyed open mouth wonder of Republicans dreamily claiming “this is the first time since Calvin Coolidge was in office that Republicans have controlled all branches of government. It will be glorious! The pundits opine for hours every day upon the historic nature of Trump’s complete domination of American politics and discuss ad nauseum how “different” things will be now that Republicans control everything.
It would be nice if I could say what I really want to say here but this article is intended to be read. So I will be polite. Horse Puckey!
The first time I heard this gobsmackery was from Newt Gingrich “Democrats have controlled both houses for 40 years. It is time for a Contract with America for change.” Is that true? you ask. No it is not. However, modern journalism and Republicans can’t seem to find the information.
So that no one has to hurt their brain with research, here is a little chart you can show your trumpeting Trumpettes when they pounce upon you with goggle-eyed nonsensory talking points.
Calvin Coolidge (R-VT) served from August 1923 until March 4, 1929. There was no Senate Majority Leader until 1925. Before that, they just did their jobs once elected without microphones and CNN. Ah, the good old days.
The first Senate Majority Leader was Charles Curtis (R-KS). Under Coolidge, Hoover and FDR’s first term the Supreme Court was also held strongly by Conservatives.
Coolidge era Republicans were simple: allow businesses and Wall Street free reign with few regulations, tax cuts to the wealthy; there was no middle class; and they refused aid to rural and farm communities even as they collapsed. Wall street, the banks and businesses collapsed 7 months later, resulting in the Great Depression. Their ideology was summed up in one of Coolidge’s favorite sayings. “Don’t expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong.”
From 1933 to 1953 Democrats controlled all branches of government except for a brief 2 year period between 1947 and 1949.Those scary Democrats won a World War, fixed the Great Depression and created the longest period of sustained economic growth in American history. They created the middle class, grew unions and promoted worker’s rights across the nation. They also came up with crazy ideas like the GI Bill, public works projects, and the Boulder Dam.
Eisenhower was a Republican (I know, shocking) and Republicans controlled both the House and Senate for 2 years giving all branches to the Republicans from January 1953 to January 1955. See, you can find this stuff easily. Eisenhower warned us not to trust Republicans and we listened for a few years and then we got crazy.
Poor Reagan had a Republican Senate for 7 of his 8 years. Oops. Mr. Gingrich lied. And lied. And he is still lying. Democrats did NOT control both houses for 40 years. To be fair it was 26 years. You know that period of pro-union pro-civil rights, pro-voting rights, Medicare, Medicaid, Pell Grant, pro-women’s right, pro-environment, clean food, clean air, rise of the middle class NASA, space program, stuff the Republicans hated and have been trying to get rid of ever since.
The Gingrich Republican wave took over again in 1995. Clinton had both a Republican House and Senate for 6 of his 8 years in office. We all fondly recall that glorious time of dozens of investigations, special prosecutors, Ken Star, more investigations, outlandish allegations, and repeated attempts to repeal Social Security,Medicare, and Medicaid, the EPA, Department of Education, the VA, social programs, the US Post Office and the destruction of unions. Glorious years.
Then came the backlash and Democrats grabbed the senate for the first 2 years of Bush’s reign. To make sure the Dems didn’t get carried away again, Republicans held full control of all branches of government including a radically Conservative majority on the Supreme Court from 2003-07. Remember those bastions of Republican integrity, Trent Lott, Dennis Hastert, Tom DeLay, and Bill Frist? From the Enron scandal, the hostage-taking of California, destruction of pension funds, the meltdown of Silicon Valley, 2 wars and the greatest collapse of the world’s economy since the Great Depression.
Obama got lucky he had 6 of his 8 years with a Democratic Senate and 2 years in the House. He also got more Senate filibusters than all the Presidents in history combined in just one year and they had five more years to create all new records. The House invented the fewest number of working days in history. Even horse and carriage legislators showed up more. But I digress.
There is a very clear pattern when Republicans control all branches of government. That is easy to look up as well, but start with the chart.